Waking up in the morning can be tough. But starting the day in a good mood can set the tone for the rest of your day and even improve your productivity. Waking up to a great song can help you start the day with a smile on your face, and these are some of the best songs to wake up to.
1. “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles
Considered by many to be the quintessential morning song, If you want to wake up with a mellow smile on your face, nothing beats the Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun.” George Harrison’s gentle voice and lyrics will give you a positive outlook, even on a day you’re dreading. Harrison wrote the song on a day he was avoiding doing business and was feeling relief at the coming of spring.
2. “Alaska” by Maggie Rogers
Maggie Rogers’s “Alaska” was good enough to impress Pharrell and it’s good enough to get you moving in the morning. This folk-pop banger is about moving on after a difficult breakup, but it can also help you face a difficult day. There’s a quiet power in the song that can build you up and give you the confidence to face the day.
3. “Brave” by Sara Bareilles
We all feel like the underdog sometimes, and Sara Bareilles wrote an anthem to make us all “Brave.” Maybe you have a big meeting, want to ask your boss for a raise, or simply have to face a difficult coworker – whatever you have ahead of you, this song will give you the strength to get through it.
4. “This Too Shall Pass” by OK Go
Sometimes there are things you can’t change, and you just have to remind yourself that “this too shall pass.” OK Go is the perfect band to wake up to. Their catchy music spreads positivity. You’ll feel better the moment you hear the first line – “You know you can’t keep lettin’ it get you down.” Crank this song and get through it.
5. “Can’t Stop the Feeling” by Justin Timberlake
If you’d rather dance instead of rolling out of bed in the morning, Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop the Feeling” will have you smiling and moving all the way to the coffee pot. “Can’t Stop the Feeling” is more about catchy sounds and positive vibes than any deeper message, but it’s a great way to start the morning off in a great mood.
6. “Morning Has Broken” by Cat Stevens
If you prefer to wake up to something on the softer side, Cat Stevens’s “Morning Has Broken” is an excellent choice. This morning song calls to mind a beautiful spring day where all of nature is waking up to the world. Stevens’s calming voice and quiet guitar will give you spiritual and meditative peace before you get on with your day.
7. “Lovely Day” by Bill Withers
The day can’t be too bad, especially if you’re waking up next to the one you love, at least according to Bill Withers in “Lovely Day.” Even if you don’t have a special someone, this song is all about focusing on the joy in your life instead of the things that get you down. Play this one to start your day on a positive note.
8. “Bittersweet Symphony” by The Verve
Some days you need to look on the bright side, but some days you just need someone to commiserate with you. If you’re having that sort of day, “Bittersweet Symphony” by The Verve is just the cure.
9. “The Circle of Life” from The Lion King Soundtrack
If you’re feeling the opposite, and want a song that reassures you that you’re part of something much bigger, there’s nothing better than “The Circle of Life” from The Lion King. Just imagine the sun rising through your window is the sun rising over the African savanna and prepare to do your part.
10. “Start Me Up” by The Rolling Stones
“Start Me Up” by The Rolling Stones lets you jump out of bed to an absolute banger. Mick Jagger’s energy along with some twangy ’60s electric guitar is sure to get you bopping out the door.
11. “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift
Do you have to deal with people you don’t really like every day? As the queen of making songs about revenge, Taylor Swift certainly knows how to rebound! When you wake up to Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” you’ll get a not-so-subtle reminder that the “haters gonna hate” and you have to just rise above it. Take a hint from Taylor and keep your head up. “It’s gonna be all right.”
12. “Mr. Blue Sky” by ELO
If you’ve recently overcome an obstacle, “Mr. Blue Sky” is a great song to wake up to. The song is all about waking up to a brand new day where everything looks so much more optimistic. Bright pianos and guitars are sure to have you looking forward to the day ahead.
13. “Stronger” by Kanye West
When you have a challenge or big presentation later in the day, you want to start pumping yourself up the moment you wake up. Kanye West’s “Stronger” will give you an adrenaline kick and the refrain of “harder, better, faster, stronger” will remind you that you can do anything.
14. “Shake It Out” by Florence + The Machine
Not to be confused with the Taylor Swift song above, Florence + The Machine’s “Shake It Out” is the perfect morning song after you’ve gone through something painful and are ready to move forward. This song will give you strength and wisdom as you start your day.
15. “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors
What better way to ensure you’ll have a good day than waking up with “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors. The more you sing along, the more you’ll believe that it’s going to be a great day. Between the upbeat lyrics and banjo, you’re sure to be smiling as you head out.
16. “Beautiful Day” by U2
U2’s “Beautiful Day” lets you wake up to an almost spiritual experience. The song is all about finding joy and beauty in everything around the world and being inspired to be a better person. What better mindset to have as you take on the world?
17. “Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley
If you’ve been letting the stress of life get you down, try waking up to Bob Marley telling you that “every little thing is gonna be all right.” His song reminds us that no matter how bad things seem, things have a way of working out.
18. “Happy” by Pharrell Williams
It’s impossible not to feel happy when the first thing you hear in the morning is Pharrell’s “Happy.” His line “clap along if you know what happiness is to you” serves as a great reminder that anyone can find happiness. This infectious pop song is the morning motivation you need.
19. “Wake Me Up” by Avicii
Avicii may be gone, but he left us with some incredible music. “Wake Me Up” is the perfect mix of folk-pop and dance to get you moving in the morning without being too intense. The song also has a great message, one of finding yourself, that you can use throughout your day.
20. “Roar” by Katy Perry
Katy Perry’s song “Roar” is the perfect hype-up song. It’s all about becoming the person you were meant to be and moving beyond the days where you were afraid to stand up for yourself. “Roar” is a great song to wake up to on a day when you’re asking for a raise or making a bold career move.
21. “Wake Up” by Arcade Fire
Arcade Fire’s “Wake Up” is a great morning song beyond the literal name. This song will make you nostalgic while also prodding you to get up and go do something great. If the message doesn’t get you, the powerful guitar riffs definitely will.
22. “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay
“Viva La Vida” translates to “long live life,” which is an awesome energy to wake up to. Although the song was originally written about King Louis’s final days, the beautiful melody and pulsing beat will get you out of the bed in the morning (and you can at least be grateful you aren’t on your way to the guillotine).
23. “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves
No list of best songs to wake up to would be complete without “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and the Waves. It’s the ultimate happy song as it captures that teenage feeling of finding your first love. What better feeling to wake up with and spend the rest of your day in a beam of sunshine?
These best songs to wake up to can fit just about any of your morning moods. Whether you have a challenging day ahead or are simply happy to be alive, there’s a song to get you in the right mindset. If you can’t pick just one, put them all on a playlist, stream it on your smart speakers, and get pumped up through your entire morning routine.
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As the Head Editor and Writer at Music Grotto, Liam helps write and edit content produced from professional music/media journalists and other contributing writers. He works closely with journalists and other staff to format and publish music content for the Music Grotto website. Liam is also the founding member of Music Grotto and is passionate in disseminating editorial content to its readers.
Liam’s lifelong love for music makes his role at Music Grotto such a rewarding one. He loves researching, writing and editing music content for Music Grotto.